To Kill a Mockingbird: Literary Analysis Honorable Atticus Atticus Finch is considered to be one of the most honorable characters in American Literature. Atticus lives in Maycomb County, Alabama. He is respectful person, who looks beyond a person’s appearance and sees who they are on the inside. He keeps a calm mind, even when tempers are flaring around him. Atticus is one of the most honorable characters because of his actions, his words, and his philosophy on life. Atticus Finch does not back down, despite having the odds stacked against him from the start. He fights for what is right, not what may be the popular decision.
During this time period, when a black man is at trial, he is unfairly viewed as guilty from the beginning. When Tom Robinson is accused of raping Mayella Ewell, many believe he is guilty without hearing his side of the story. When Atticus steps up to defend Tom at his trial, the town is in great disapproval. Atticus does it because of his philosophy of life. He believes if you are going to truly understand and judge someone, you must put on their “skin. ” He looks beyond the color of the person’s skin, their religion, and their lifestyle and is kind and respectful of their choices.
Atticus is honorable because he does not judge people on their differences. Mr. Finch feels that if he didn’t defend Tom, he would lose his self- respect, and the respect of others. In Chapter Nine, Scout asks Atticus why he is defending Tom Robinson and Atticus replies, “For a number of reasons,’ said Atticus. ‘The main one is, if I didn’t I couldn’t hold up my head in town, I couldn’t represent this county in the legislature, I couldn’t even tell you or Jem not to do something again,” (100). Atticus, even faced with danger, keeps calm and uses courteous, but strong actions.
Atticus feels that if he did not take this case, he would be a failure and couldn’t force someone else to do something. In Chapter Twenty-Three, Mrs. Stephanie Crawford informs Jem and Scout what Mr. Bob Ewell has done to their father, “…[Miss Stephanie says] Mr. Ewell approached [Atticus], cursed him, spat on him, and threatened to kill him … Atticus’s peaceful reaction probably prompted him to inquire, ‘Too proud to fight, you n****r-lovin’ b*****d? ’ Miss Stephanie said Atticus said, ‘No, too old,’ put his hands in his pockets and strolled on. Miss Stephanie said you had to hand it to Atticus Finch, he could be right dry sometimes,” (291).
Atticus allowed Mr. Bob Ewell to get what he thought of Atticus out, and Atticus took it peacefully. In that situation, Atticus showed Bob Ewell that Atticus was the bigger person. To show, Atticus is honorable because he thinks out what he is going to do. Atticus is a noble character for his actions, his “appropriate for the moment” words, and his advanced philosophy. If more people took the ideas and philosophy of Atticus Finch, then the world would be a better place. He shows a far more advanced lifestyle for his time period. People like Atticus Finch shape an improved, less racist and understanding world.
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